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Editorial StaffNovember 21, 20226min
By Maia Bronfman ‘24 As the male love interest in Olivia Snow’s ’25 neo-Shakespearean drama, Lena Weiman ’25 said she had to learn to be a rake, and then to be a dead rake. Having never before in her life been a rake or dead, Weiman said she relied on the dialogues with her co-actors to inhabit the character of Claudio de’Bossi. Masquerade, the five act play which premiered in the 92 Theatre on November 11, was first imagined by Snow in her freshman year of high school. She read King Lear, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet and other Shakespeare…

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Andrew ChatfieldAugust 16, 20226min
The kernel for “ABCD,” the first professionally produced play written by playwright, director, and dramaturg May Treuhaft-Ali ’17, started as a 10-page class assignment the spring of her senior year at Wesleyan. “ABCD,” which premiered at the Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, this summer, began as part of her coursework at Wesleyan with Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright Quiara Alegría Hudes (“In the Heights”) that focused on writing historical plays. The crosslisted Theater and English course “Writing History” was an intermediate-level playwriting workshop. Treuhaft-Ali examined plays that used different dramaturgical strategies to grapple with, question, and invigorate the historical record; and…

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Andrew ChatfieldJune 1, 20226min
Assistant Professor of Theater Maria-Christina Oliveras was supposed to be a lawyer. While growing up in the Bronx, Oliveras became fascinated with musicals thanks to her father, an immigrant from Puerto Rico with a passion for “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Man of La Mancha.” She performed at her high school in New Rochelle, then majored in Theater at Yale University. As an undergraduate, she interned at the Manhattan Theatre Club and started acting professionally in "South Pacific.” After two years auditioning in New York, she pursued her M.F.A. at the National Theatre Conservatory in Denver before joining with a…

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Andrew ChatfieldFebruary 15, 20227min
Actor Greig Sargeant was watching a debate on YouTube in the fall of 2019 and he started getting very angry. It wasn’t new footage, though – the clip was over 54 years old. In February 1965, writers James Baldwin, one of the most powerful figures of the Civil Rights Movement, and William F. Buckley, Jr., the father of 20th century patrician conservatism, had been invited to the Cambridge University Union in England to debate the proposition “The American Dream is at the expense of the American Negro.” “It was definitely relevant for me, being a Black man and seeing this…

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Olivia DrakeMarch 19, 20219min
On March 18, the Center for the Arts presented "A Conversation with Theater Artist Miranda Haymon ’16." Haymon, visiting instructor of theater, is Wesleyan's inaugural Breaking New Ground Theater Artist-in-Residence, a new residency that brings early-career Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) theater artists to campus. The discussion was led by Sam Morreale ’19. During the conversation, Haymon discussed artistic processes, Blackness, queerness, Brechtian analysis, the impacts of the pandemic on artmaking, and ideas for the future. Haymon compared a theater performance to a "living document" in which the performance, audience, and actors are constantly changing. "The work changes, and…

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Olivia DrakeMarch 14, 20212min
Edward Torres, assistant professor of the practice in theater, was named an Old Globe 2021 Classical Directing Fellow. Torres has directed multiple productions at the San Diego, Calif.-based Old Globe, including Familiar, Native Gardens, and Water by the Spoonful, as well as two readings for the Powers New Voices Festivals. He recently directed a podcast version of Macbeth for NEXT Podcast and Play On Shakespeare. Torres directed the premiere of Kristoffer Diaz’s The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity at Victory Gardens Theater and Teatro Vista, which won two Jeff Awards. He's also the artistic director emeritus at Teatro Vista. Led…

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Olivia DrakeOctober 19, 20202min
The Theater Department presented its fall show, SLABBER, Oct. 16–18 on the Center for the Arts green. The socially-distanced performances were open for groups of 48 audience members at a time. Directed by Assistant Professor of Theater Katie Pearl, SLABBER introduced the audience to a group of enigmatic figures who have traveled to Wesleyan to diagnose their mysterious condition—one they have been suffering from for years. As they reveal their research, audience members are pulled deep into a fable of an outcast little girl, the history of Middletown, and a soap-cutting machine known only as the slabber. This performance asked…

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Olivia DrakeOctober 1, 20207min
Watch the full event recording online here. And RSVP for the Theater Deparment's next event, "A Conversation with Associate Professor Rashida Shaw McMahon" at 4 p.m. Oct. 19. "Thank you again for all your support and presence," Oliveras said. "The first of many conversations, as we collectively lean into the stickiness and beautiful potential change of this moment."

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Olivia DrakeMay 4, 20202min
The shows must go on. Rather than allowing the COVID-19 pandemic to force a final curtain call on theatrical productions, Wesleyan's Theater Department pivoted to an online format. On May 1, and again on May 2, the department offered livestreamed performances of The Method Gun, featuring 10 student-actors. A replay of the Saturday performance is available for viewing on The Method Gun @ Wes website. After countless hours of line rehearsals, overcoming technical frustrations, and learning how to act and teach theater in a virtual world, show director and Assistant Professor of Theater Katie Pearl breathed a sigh of relief…